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Journey through a Day

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Journey through a Day

Published ca. 1967

A young boy in red shirt and blue jeans wanders through the countryside and catches a fish. Poetic documentary-style evocation of a child's awareness of his environment. Producer: Dale Johnson. With: "Ralph" (Boy). In Ektachrome.

Run time 16:54
Producer Johnson (Dale)
Audio/Visual Sd, C


A young boy in red shirt and blue jeans wanders through the countryside and catches a fish.

Crawl: ÒIn the life of every man there is a time of boyhood Ð a time when he is intensely aware of his environment and his reactions to it are uniquely his own.Ó

CU boyÕs hands inspecting a small worm (stick?)
VS boy fishing by river
CU raccoon looking at camera, then VS coon walks down tree trunk
Boy tries to grab fish out of river
CU toad, jumps out of boyÕs grasp
Boy falls into water to catch toad
CU toad in boyÕs hand
Boy walks along stony riverbank
CU shallow, clear water with small fish swimming in it
Boy spits into water
CU spit hitting water
CU 4 blue robinsÕ eggs in nest
CU boy fingers eggs, then removes finger and rolls back grass to protect nest
Boy lies down by river with stalk in his mouth, looks at sky
Clouds in sky moving slowly (VS)
Superimposed fantasies of cattle drives, stagecoaches, Western scenes over clouds and image of boy lying on ground (music: ÒGhost Riders in the SkyÓ) (weird)
Super of boyÕs face, clouds, horses and riders (weird)
Boy walks from right to left (tracking shot)
BoyÕs feet walking through violet flowers
Boy walking thru field filled with wildflowers
CU frog (or horned toad?) jumping thru flowers and grass
Boy picks up horned toad (?), stuffs in bluejean pocket
BoyÕs legs and feet walking thru blackeyed Susans
CU black butterfly or moth on flower
CU dribbling stream
CU boy holds armadillo in hands
Armadillo runs away
CU nest with newly born baby birds, all red, feeding
Boy walks thru forested area
CU ants running around on ground
CU boy puts down horned toad on ground near ants
Rotating shot looking up at dark trees against bright sky, shot in shaded forest
Boy climbing around rocks
Finds fluffy white bird (raptor?) hissing, and steps away
Tries to touch bird (these are fledglings)
Mother hawk is in sky flying around
Boy starts to run, runs uphill and back thru forest to river
Boy running thru trees accompanied by ominous music
Boy collapses, tired
Boy walks along stony riverbank as before
Raccoon walks down tree in front of boy
Boy finds fishing pole where it has been all day Ð he has caught a fish
He catches more fish, rolls up his line
Leaves river with three fish, it is getting a bit dark



Reviewer: beaelliott - - June 8, 2011
Subject: Totally dis-jointed
How strange that this young boy finds "wonderment" in a the life around him... The frogs, the birds, the other animals he encounters. Yet, there he is at the end taking life. No consideration (or consistency) in his expanded "world view". From the first worm he sacrificed to the last fish he hooked - What a shame that films like this were supposed to show the molding of character. Sad.
Reviewer: unzar - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 3, 2010
Subject: A Day in the Life of: Ralph
A visual diary, "Journey Through A Day" follows a boy spending a routine summer day in the country. More meditative than informative, it has an appealing relaxed quality. While not technically superior, it has a good variation of shots and the lack of dialogue gives it an intimate feel.

The scene where Ralph runs like he's frightened (with ominous background music), made me think I missed something. Maybe in deleted scenes we would see him poking at bear cubs.

The fishing sequences and dramatic light at beginning and end make for fitting bookends to the film.
Reviewer: pheret - favoritefavoritefavorite - January 20, 2008
Subject: journey through a day
all i could think about was "I hope he doesn't get leprosy from that armadillo."
Reviewer: ERD - favoritefavoritefavorite - May 10, 2006
Subject: Just Okay.
I understood the point of this film, but I did not find the photography that great, and felt the film could have been a little shorter. (Especially the day dreaming sequence.)
Reviewer: filmic - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 26, 2004
Subject: A g E m
there are some excellent build-up moments!

what filmmaking!
what expression!

busy...bye...soon again

damn point it i S!

it's what we all need MOre of...

peace-olah, filmic
Reviewer: Spuzz - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 14, 2003
Subject: Simply Beautiful!
One of the more gloriously beautiful pictures in the Prelinger Archive. The movie may have some people scratching their heads, but I had a wonderful time watching "Ralph" enjoying a summer day, catching fish, catching lizards, bothering more birds, setting bait for ants, seeing things in the clouds, daydreaming, running and so forth. No dialogue, and some may say it has no point. But that IS the point. A real find, and a MUST SEE on this site!
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